This Labor Day is especially sad for me. As a resident of Wisconsin, I have watched my fellow citizens agree with Governor Walkerfuhrer’s destruction of the unions that used to protect teachers and other public employees. I have watch my fellow citizens show up at school board meetings and actually boo and jeer teachers, themselves too stupid and uneducated to realize the full implications of their actions. I have watched as my country has turned back the clock on worker’s rights, apparently forgetting the horrible abuses of men, women, and children by corporate America just over one hundred years ago. I have watched corporations declared people, while people continue to be treated as less than human by being denied healthcare and other basic human necessities because wealthy politicians, having prostituted themselves for corporate money, lie and characterize the poor as lazy.
Today, more people will think about children with Muscular Dystrophy than will think about people who work for a living. Don’t misunderstand, people with MD need our attention, but on Labor Day we might also be well served to remember that the minimum wage, the forty hour work week, and the ideas of sick pay and vacation pay were fought for and earned by labor unions – not corporations out of the goodness of their hearts.
We have become a nation where amoral greediness seems to be the biggest value, and many people couldn’t care less if every other America dies of disease and starvation as long as it means more money in their pockets. They have not yet matured enough to understand that you can’t by happiness, that all things are impermanent, that you never have enough until you decide that what you have IS enough, and that people are always more important than possessions.
It is a sad day.